How to Appeal a Speeding Ticket Conviction in Ontario

If you’ve been convicted of speeding under Section 128 of the Highway Traffic Act and believe the conviction was unjust, there are legal options to challenge the decision. Understanding these options is important for navigating the appeal process correctly.


Your Options

1. Reopening Your Case

A reopening is an option if you missed your court date or there were extenuating circumstances that prevented you from properly defending yourself. This process allows you to request a new trial date to contest the charge again.

2. Formal Appeal

If your case was heard and a conviction was rendered by a judge or justice of the peace, your next step is to file a formal appeal. This process is more complex and requires a strong understanding of legal procedures and grounds for appeal.


Grounds for Appeal

Not all reasons for wanting to appeal a conviction are considered valid in a legal context. Successful appeals typically hinge on specific issues:

  • Error in Law: Mistakes in applying or interpreting the law during your trial.
  • Error in Fact: Incorrect facts or evidence were used to reach the conviction.
  • Lack of Opportunity to Present Evidence: Evidence that could have proven your innocence wasn’t considered at the trial.


Personal hardships, such as increased insurance rates or job loss due to the conviction, while significant, do not constitute grounds for appeal.


Steps to Appeal

  1. Identify Valid Grounds: Consult with a legal professional to determine if your case has any merit.
  2. File the Appeal: Submit the necessary paperwork within the designated time frame post conviction. This process includes detailing the grounds for your appeal.
  3. Request a Stay: If the conviction has immediate negative impacts on your life (e.g., job loss), you may request a stay of the conviction, temporarily lifting its effects (demerit points, fine, etc.) until the appeal is heard.
  4. Prepare for a Possible New Trial: If the appeal is successful, be prepared to contest the charge at a new trial, starting the process over with the advantage of correcting previous errors or presenting new evidence.


Legal Assistance With OTD Legal

The appeal process for a speeding ticket in Ontario can be confusing. The grounds for appeal and legal procedures highlight the importance of seeking experienced legal representation.

At OTD Legal, we specialize in traffic law and have a proven track record in assisting clients with the appeal process. Our expertise not only lies in identifying viable grounds for appeal but also in effectively presenting your case to achieve the best possible outcome. Contact us at OTD Legal for a free consultation if you’re considering an appeal for your speeding ticket conviction. 


Video Transcription:


How to appeal for a speeding ticket in Ontario for the purpose of this video, we’re going to assume one thing and that is that what you’re asking is what do you do if you’ve already been convicted under section one 28 of the Highway Traffic Act for speeding? There are two remedies that could be applied depending on the situation, which would help.

One, is called a reopening. Situations that involve reopening are situations where  of appeals. One is something like that. And the other would be, has the matter gone to court? If it’s been in front of a judge or justice of the peace, and that court has decided that there should be a conviction, well in those cases too, the only mechanism available would be what I call a formal appeal.

You would need to develop proper grounds to appeal. It’s important to note that. And the reason why that’s important is because there are many things that defendants consider legitimate grounds of appeal that simply are not. And it’s unfair for defendants that are heading into a courtroom that way, thinking that their grounds for appeal have merit.

Some of the weak grounds that… Clients have gone into on their own, have been, well, you know, I paid the ticket, for example, and, and now my insurance rate has gone up by a multiple of five. It’s gone from $1, 000 a year to $5, 000 a year. An obvious tragedy, an obvious problem, but it is not considered a ground in the courtroom and therefore would fail at the appeal.

That’s one possible problem. The, so my point in telling you that is the ground is very specific. We would be looking for things like error in law, error in fact. Or we didn’t have an opportunity at the trial, for example, evidence that could have been exculpatory. If considered, they may have escaped conviction.

In those situations, those are considered reasonable grounds, and if a appeal court judge considers that, and he thinks, he can decide one of two things. He may dismiss the matter at that stage, or he may direct that a new trial be ordered. Those are important things to have happen, but in order to get those things to actually occur, The proper steps have to be made and much consideration has to be taken into how we would get to that location.

If granted, what would happen in most cases, you would be ordered back to trial. So the conviction would be lifted and on another day you would start the process all over. There are and have been situations that I’ve dealt with and, and most of my staff where the conviction, sometimes through no fault of their own, causes great problem in their life.

Perhaps even the loss of their employment. In those situations, there’s special considerations that have to be taken on that appeal. Special paperwork that needs to be filed with the appeal to get what I call relief. And one of those particular documents would be a stay. A stay would lift the conviction immediately until it can get before a judge for a judge to properly consider what those grounds are.

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